50 CFR § 84.30 - How are projects selected for grants?

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§ 84.30 How are projects selected for grants?

Project selection is a three-step process: proposal acceptance, proposal ranking, and proposal selection.

(a) Proposal acceptance.

(1) The Regional Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Offices decide whether a proposal should be accepted for consideration by determining if the proposal is complete, substantial, and contains activities that are eligible. Proposals that do not qualify are immediately returned to the State. Revision and resubmission of returned proposals is allowable during this period, which is in June (check with your Regional Office for the exact dates each year). If any of the factors of completeness, substantiality, or eligibility are not met, the Regions should not forward the proposal to Headquarters.

(2) To be considered for acceptance, the proposal must be substantial in character and design. A substantial proposal is one that:

(i) Identifies and describes a need within the purposes of the Act;

(ii) Identifies the objective to be accomplished based on the stated need;

(iii) Uses accepted principles, sound design, and appropriate procedures;

(iv) Provides public conservation benefits that are cost effective and long-term, i.e., at least 20 years; and

(v) Identifies obtainable, quantified performance measures (acres enhanced, restored, or protected) that help achieve the management goals and objectives of the National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program. Through this program, the States' efforts and leadership will help the Service meet its Long-Term and Annual Performance Goals as expressed in the Service's Annual Performance Plan. 1

1 The Service's Annual Performance Plan can be found on the Service's homepage at http://www./.fws.gov/r9gpra. For more information you might also contact the Budget Office at 202-208-4596 or the Planning and Evaluation Staff at 202-208-2549.

(3) The grant limit is $1 million. Proposals requesting Program awards that exceed $1 million will be returned to the appropriate State. Similarly, individual projects that have clearly been divided into multiple proposals for submission in one grant cycle to avoid this limit will be returned to the appropriate State. The State can revise and resubmit the proposal so that the request does not exceed the $1 million limit.

(b) Proposal ranking. Once a proposal is accepted by the Region, the Regional Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Office sends the proposal to the National Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Office, which works with the National Office of the Fish and Wildlife Management and Habitat Restoration Program for distribution to a Review Panel. The Review Panel includes representation from our coastal Regions and from other Service Programs, for example, the Endangered Species Program. The Fisheries and Habitat Conservation Program is responsible for coordinating the review and ranking of proposals according to the established criteria, a process that usually involves a national meeting.

(c) Proposal selection. The Review Panel's recommendations are forwarded to the Director of the Service for a final review and project selection. The Director announces the selection by October 1.

[67 FR 49267, July 30, 2002, as amended at 78 FR 35152, June 12, 2013]